|One of the great things about reviewing music in the realms of stoner and doom is the amount of excellent new music that crosses my desk. I can think of no other genres in which even rank beginners so consistently have worthwhile tuneage to get across, much less the music veterans. The bar is set pretty high alright, but sometimes I get a disc that shines like a magnesium flare at midnight, that's so much better than the average fare that I find myself recommending it to people like a broken record after just the first listen.|
Indianapolis would be a big city in many parts of the US, a magnet for travelling musicians. However, due to the proximity of Chicago and Detroit the city is often bypassed, and has thus developed a slightly insular music scene of its own. If Devil to Pay are any indication, some record label would be wise to jump all over them. The Devil' boys have gathered together their eclectic hard rock and metal backgrounds to create a new classic sound which is mainly....hard rock and metal. And doom. Its hard to say exactly what it is, since their music seems to constantly renegotiate the boundaries between the genres, but it comes up smelling like a fine single malt whisky every time. Led by the John Garcia-esque vocals of Steve Janiak, Devil to Pay never misstep and there's not a bad tune on the whole album. The songwriting is fantastic, the music is neither too simple nor too mathy, the solos are just long enough, and the riffs are fat and thick. The only shortcoming for some might be that the album tends to be too heavily mid-tempo, but that’s not a problem for me.
Since they're so consistently good, there's no point in calling out single tracks except to note that the group had the balls to put on an instrumental as the first song, and it works pretty well. After all, if it works live, why not put it first on the CD?
This is blue collar (or is it black collar??heh) chugga chugga rock at its best. This in-your-face tuneage mixes up 'Sabbathy doom, metal a la High on Fire, the southern alcohol-fueled slam of Down, Corrosion of Conformity or Alabama Thunderpussy, and the classic groove of Unida and Roadsaw to create an up-to-date yet classic sound that seems to turn on everyone that hears it. Now if they'd just tour outside Indiana...
1. Mouthful of Spite
2. The Lamb
3. Dinosaur Steps
4. Whores of Babylon
5. Angular Shapes
6. Tractor Fuckin' Trailer
7. The New Black
9. Lowest Common Denominator
11. Valley of the Dogs
Duration : Approx. 49 minutes
Visit the Devil To Pay bandpage.